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Sontag, Susan, ed)

Antonin Artaud, Selected Writings.


Inscribed to Elizabeth Hardwick
Sontag, Susan, ed. Antonin Artaud. Selected Writings. New York: Farrar Straus and Giroux, (1976).  
8vo.; red cloth; black title label affixed to spine; stamped in gilt; photographic dust-jacket.
First edition of this collection of Artaud's writings, edited with an introduction by Sontag, translated from French by Helen Weaver, and with notes by Sontag and Don Eric Levine. A presentation copy, inscribed on the front endpaper: for Lizzie, with all my love and admiration, Susan.
"Lizzie" is Elizabeth Hardwick; Sontag and Hardwick met through the Partisan Review circle in the early 1960s, and Sontag went on to write for the publication Hardwick helped to found, the New York Review of Books. Sontag and Hardwick were two authoritative female critics on the New York intellectual scene: "the cult of the New York intellectual was a matter of personal mystique. It was a wonderful cast of characters, and it's a wonder nobody's made a movie of them all." This cast included "The dashing, passionate, skunk-haired Sontag…[and] the genteel Hardwick," and the two women remained acquainted - and respectful of each other's work - until Sontag's death in 2004.
Sontag once praised Hardwick's writing thus: "Her sentences are burned in my brain. I think she writes the most beautiful sentences, more beautiful sentences than any living American writer." Hardwick wrote the Introduction to The Susan Sontag Reader (1982), and published an obituary for her in the New York Review of Books.
In thirty-eight chapters, including Artaud's essays, poems, transcribed correspondence, excerpts from prose pieces and diary entries, and interviews; with a lengthy introductory essay by Sontag, and fifteen black and white photographs.
Provenance: From the Library of Elizabeth Hardwick, West 67th St., New York City.

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